New program to offer Cleveland students introduction to building trades
By Chuck Hoven

(Plain Press, August 2006) Beginning this fall, sixth grader students from the Cleveland Municipal School District will have an opportunity to learn more about the construction trades by working with fellow students to build a model house. Max Hayes High School will host the “If I Had a Hammer Program” of the Union Construction Industry Partnership-Apprenticeship Skills Achievement Program (UCIP-ASAP).

Nadine Champaigne of UCIP-ASAP says the program is part of an educational outreach program to introduce younger students to the various trades involved in construction.  She said students interested in the program will sign up at their schools and then go on a field trip to Max Hayes. About 25 students will assemble the house in the shop room at Max Hayes. Students will work in teams of 4 or 5 students, each team assembling a wall.  Students will learn how to use power drills, hammers, nails and goggles and other tools as they assemble a model house from a kit, she said. Champaigne expects that it will take about three hours for the students to assemble the house.

Max Hayes shop teacher Jim Mulgrew will guide the students through the construction process. Mulgrew, a Detroit Shoreway resident, worked as a cement mason for 25 years and was a member of Cement Masons Local 404 before obtaining a degree in education and becoming a shop teacher at Max Hayes.

Champaigne says the program will start with sixth graders this year, but is designed to work with children from 3rd grade through 9th grade. She says a pilot program started in Daniel Morgan last school year. This summer, a Girl Scout troop and a church educational program have participated in the program.

On Thursday July 20th, about 24 youths from the Youth Under Construction Program of New Sardis Primitive Baptist Church on E. 141st visited Max Hayes on a field trip and received an introduction to the construction trades through the “If I Had a Hammer Program.” The students tried out various tools while working on the model house under the direction of Mulgrew. During their break, the students feasted on a lunch provided by Dave’s Supermarket.

Partnering in the program with UCIP-ASAP are the Cleveland Municipal School District, Max Hayes High School, National City Bank and AT&T.


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